Economy

Judy Shelton Appears Headed for Confirmation to a Federal Reserve Seat

Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images
  • Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday he is advancing the controversial nomination of Judy Shelton to the Federal Reserve.
  • The effort to get Shelton on the board of governors looked to be in trouble after she was approved by the judiciary committee following a contentious July hearing.

Judy Shelton appears now to have enough Republican support for her controversial nomination to the Federal Reserve's board of governors to get through.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Thursday he will advance Shelton's name to the Senate floor after Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) told reporters she now will support the economic advisor to President Donald Trump, CNBC's Ylan Mui reported.

"I've had an opportunity to talk to Judy Shelton and I'm going to be supporting her," Murkowski told reporters Thursday afternoon, according to reports in various news outlets.

Shelton's nomination had been stalled in the Senate even though the finance committee cleared her by a narrow party-line 13-12 vote in July. Several key Republicans had been wavering in their support, and it appeared for some time that the nomination would not clear before the current congressional session ended.

At the contentious July hearing, senators grilled Shelton over her views on Fed independence, her support of the gold standard and her wavering over whether bank deposits should be insured.

Democratic senators accused Shelton of backpedaling from earlier statements she had made on those issues.

McConnell's move drew an angry rebuke from Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Oregon), ranking member of the finance committee, who called it "an effort to sabotage what little economic recovery we have by installing an unqualified, political pick."

"Her ideas are so wacky and outdated, giving her authority over the dollar would be like putting a medieval barber in charge of the" Centers for Disease Control, Wyden said in a statement. "Shelton's views are so extreme, Senate Republicans have long refused to confirm her."

Her co-nominee, St. Louis Fed executive vice president Christopher Waller, faced a much easier time and gained committee approval by an 18-7 vote. However, it is unclear whether his name will be presented with Shelton at a full Senate vote expected to take place around the middle of next week.

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